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‘The Marvels’ 4K UHD (Digital Review)

Disney

You may have heard that The Marvels seems to have developed a poor reputation.

In fact, word of mouth was against it even before it was released.

It turns out, though, that The Marvels is the best current example of why you should never listen to word of mouth.

The Marvels is the most fun I’ve had watching a superhero movie in some time.

As with most Marvel movies, it helps tremendously if you’ve already seen the other MCU movies and television series. I was actually a little behind as we had not had Disney+ again until recently and I no longer go to movies in theaters. I still enjoyed it!

The picture is colorful, big, and loud and filled with flashy special effects. The plotline has specific ties to various previous MCU touchpoints but mainly to 2019’s Captain Marvel, WandaVision, and the recent Ms. Marvel TV series.

Spoilers are possible going forward so proceed at your own risk.

The Kree/Skrull conflict is at the heart of the first half of the movie as we discover that a female Kree leader is determined to re-create her home world as it was before Captain Marvel—known to them as The Annihilator—accidentally set it on a path to destruction.

Her plan calls for her to steal the natural resources of other planets to do so. In particular, those other planets are all planets that Carol Danvers—Captain Marvel—has called home.

To do this, she uses a powerful arm bangle that happens to be the long-missing opposite of the one that gave Kamala Khan her powers in the Ms. Marvel series. If the connection was made as to how the two were intergalactically separated, I missed it.

Another item not explained as well as it might have been was the coincidence of how Ms. Marvel, Captain Marvel, and Monica Rambeau (in the comics, originally a Captain Marvel, too) all started switching places when they used their various light-based super powers, and just as Carol Danvers was fighting the Kree woman with the other bangle.

But you know what?

I didn’t care. The Marvels is a roller coaster ride from start to finish. The three women, realizing they’re somehow tied together, team up on a galactic quest to save themselves and save the earth.

Brie Larson is once again the stoic, seemingly all-powerful cosmic heroine, although she is allowed to show her humanity in several spots. Teyonah Parris is Monica Rambeau, seen previously as a child in Captain Marvel and then as an agent in WandaVision. She comes across as the heart of the show.

Unexpectedly, the real treat of The Marvels is Iman Vellani, the amazingly expressive actress who plays Ms. Marvel. She is not just a scene-stealer; she is a scene-enhancer. Every scene she’s in seems better by her presence, even if she’s only in the background. Her emotions are worn on her face at all times—excitement, confusion, empathy, determination, fear, joy, anger. This young woman is in her early twenties, playing a teenager. I have a feeling she’s going to be around a long time.

After I watched The Marvels, I immediately began bingeing her Ms. Marvel series, which at times feels like a prequel to The Marvels.

The actors who play Kamala’s parents on the series are also in the movie, as is Samuel Jackson’s Nick Fury (almost a prerequisite for an MCU flick). Kelsey Grammer’s X-Man, Hank McCoy (wonderful casting), shows up in the inter-credits scene, and Hawkeye’s heroine, Kate Bishop, cameos, as well.

Extras include commentary, EPK, production diaries, gag real and deleted scenes.

If all the fuss was over this being a movie about women superheroes, then those making such a fuss were cheating themselves out of a delightful, exciting, visually impressive, serious but fun romp of a superhero movie!

And I didn’t even mention the litter of flerkens!

Booksteve Recommends.

 

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